IRGC Commander Says 'US Hand-Made Armies' Failed to Tackle Terrorists in Afghanistan, Iraq

© AFP 2022 / Thomas COEXUS Marines wave goodbye as they leave the military headquarters in Najaf in central Iraq, 23 September 2003
US Marines wave goodbye as they leave the military headquarters in Najaf in central Iraq, 23 September 2003 - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.09.2021
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This summer, the Taliban's* rapid offensive against Afghan government forces, which came amid the US and NATO troop exit from the nation, resulted in the militant group seizing power in the country and declaring the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.
General Gholam Ali Rashid, commander of the Khatam ol-Anbia Headquarters with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), has argued that the armies trained by the US military in Iraq and Afghanistan failed to successfully fight terrorists in those countries.

"Today, we see that no one can fight [defend his/her country] by [sticking to] the thinking and method of the Americans as the US hand-made armies collapsed in Iraq against ISIL [Daesh*] and in Afghanistan against [the] Taliban", General Rashid told reporters on Saturday.

The remarks come almost a month after Secretary of State Antony Blinken assured Iraqi President Barham Salih that the US combat mission against Daesh in the country is not over, and that it is "shifting to a new phase based on the enhanced capabilities of the Iraqi Security Forces".
There are currently an estimated 2,500 US troops in Iraq assisting local forces to counter Daesh terrorists, with President Joe Biden saying in July that the American mission in Iraq would come to a close by the end of this year. According to him, after 31 December 2021, the US is expected to switch to training and assisting Iraqi forces to tackle the terrorist movement.
© AFP 2022 / AHMAD AL-RUBAYEUS soldiers monitor as they train Iraq's 72nd Brigade in a live-fire exercise in Basmaya base, southeast of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on January 27, 2016
US soldiers monitor as they train Iraq's 72nd Brigade in a live-fire exercise in Basmaya base, southeast of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on January 27, 2016 - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.09.2021
US soldiers monitor as they train Iraq's 72nd Brigade in a live-fire exercise in Basmaya base, southeast of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on January 27, 2016
The US has maintained a troop presence in Iraq since March 2003. At the time, tens of thousands of American forces were deployed as part of a larger effort to oust then-Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and "disarm" Bagdad of weapons of mass destruction, whose existence was never confirmed.
Although American forces were momentarily withdrawn under the Obama administration, they were eventually redeployed in 2014 with the emergence of the Daesh militant force, which had seized large swaths of northwestern Iraq and proceeded to expand into eastern Syria.
A member of Taliban forces inspects the area outside Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan August 16, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 14.09.2021
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In 2017, Iraq and the US announced that Daesh had been defeated, but American combat forces have stayed in the country ever since, justifying their presence by citing the threat said to be posed by the terrorist group's remnants.
After the January 2020 assassination of top Iranian general, Qasem Soleimani, by the US Iraq's parliament adopted a resolution demanding that all American forces be expelled from the country. In the months that followed, the Pentagon began paring down troop numbers from 5,300 to 2,500, and handed over several major bases to Iraqi forces, but refused to agree with parliament's demands to leave the country completely.

US Mission in Afghanistan

Earlier this year, the Taliban launched an offensive against Afghan government forces amid the hasty US troop withdrawal, seizing the entire country in a matter of months.
The Afghan Army often surrendered cities without a fight and many of Kabul's troops switched sides in the conflict. This led to the Taliban seizing Kabul on 15 August as the nation's leader, President Ashraf Ghani, fled on a plane, presumably filled with cash. The Taliban declared the end of hostilities in the country on the same day, saying the war was "over".
US Marines keep watch during an evacuation at Hamid Karzai International Airport, Kabul, Afghanistan, 18 August 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 06.09.2021
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On 30 August, the Pentagon confirmed that America's nearly 20-year presence in Afghanistan came to a close when the final Boeing C-17 aircraft departed from Kabul's Hamid Karzai International Airport. Former US President Donald Trump slammed the troop exit as the greatest embarrassment in the nation's history.
American forces invaded Afghanistan under then-US President George W. Bush in 2001, as part of the infamous "War on Terror", following the 9/11 terrorist attacks masterminded by al-Qaeda*. The invasion resulted in the deaths of at least 2,448 US servicemen and over 47,200 Afghan civilians, and cost taxpayers approximately $2.261 trillion, according to the most recent estimates.
*Daesh (ISIL/ISIS/Islamic State), the Taliban, and al-Qaeda are terrorist groups banned in Russia and many other countries.
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